Spain is one destination with a beautiful coastline, which is best experienced while one drives down South of Spain across the Andulacias.
Granada was the first town where we had a sneak peek at the Spanish History and Culture.
We reached Granada by a flight from Barcelona. The Airport shuttle took us to the nearest Drop off point near a cathedral. It then just appeared to be a spot from where we then dragged our luggage through the pebbled descending streets. But later after shedding off our tiredness, we soon realized that we are lodged right in the middle of the main Calle De Alcaiceria, where the view from our apartment was no less than a first class balcony view for any grand show.
More About the Spice Market
This Placa La Alcaiceria, the area of the city is the Spice market. It used to be an important part of the Spice route of ancient times. The place just started weaving us in itself, as soon as we stepped out to take a walk around. Medieval feel shops lined alongside the maze of streets, the pebbled walkways, the sunshade over the streets, Just bought us into a day from the history which we Just had seen in movies. Very Moorish, Arabic feel. Souvenir shops are just so irresistible( as always). But they had something really interesting was the spices on display with their related uses, which just kept is engaged for a few hours as I was trying to spot a few which could be taken back and are probably not found in India. Managed to pick some paella spice and the saffron, which smelled just so good, and eventually, I realized it is one of the best I have had till date from a known chain of store s of spices Called The Medievo.
Exploring Granada’s History
Granada called “the Moorish Jewel” , and a long-time capital of Moorish Andalusia has Alhambra as a Bite full of History and architecture, and popular with travelers. Declared as a UNESCO- world heritage site, for us it was one of the reasons to visit Granada.
Alhambra is best explored with a good 4-5 hours in hand and to avoid the long Queues consider purchasing the skip the line – Alhambra half-day tour Ticket (We purchased it online just a day before we reached Granada)
Alhambra Complex is a huge one with four main buildings in a beautifully landscaped gardens on the hillock, overlooking the town of Granada, establishing the Majestic feel of the Fort.
One walks through, beautiful Gardens from one set of buildings to the other. The Alcazaba ( The Moorish Fortress)The Nasrid Palaces with marbled courtyards, and The court of Lions, which makes it spectacular), The Palace of Charles V, The Generalife ( with beautiful Moorish gardens, fountains, green patios, Fragrant unique roses, Ponds, and flower-adorned Terraces).
The Open Auditorium at Prince Charles V palace, Known for its architecture and acoustics, It’s a famous spot for music and theatre performances from across the globe.
We hopped from one beautiful building to the other, and each of them, had a different landscape, Historical edge to the previous. for me, History may not make a subject to grab enough attention, but the architectural beauty kept me captivated for all those moments I was there, and captured a few to create a flashback. such was the effect of the world Famous “Alhambra ”
The Traditional Arab Bath “The Banuelo”
Traditional Moorish Hammams, Banuelos, are Granada’s well preserved Moorish sites, where one can experience the old structures in their original form. Visit the El Banuelo, which is a conserved Moorish Bath structure. It is Hammam s in their original form but not operational.
One can experience the Moorish baths at the Hammam , Al Andalus near Plaza Nueva in an authentic way, built on the site of original Moorish bath House but the newly built building is authentic with arches and Islamic style tile work. It is advised to book a day before when u reach as they have specific slots for all the services.
Granada By the evening
A stroll around the Cathedral took us to a patisserie, Lopez Merquila, Where we had our tea time bites, and Croissants.
Evening comes alive in the Central plaza of the spice market, But the restaurants are slightly on a higher price range. For a stroll away from the plaza, one can walk up to the cafes and restaurants in Bib Rambla….a maze of streets nesting many street cafes and bars…We wanted to seat outside by the street side, and we managed one at the Bodegas. Nice Music and the Sangria, keeps the mood of the evening.
We just had a rub with the best of History, Architecture, and food of Spain here at Granada, while we were here for just about two nights and three days, it was a fulfilling stay, and perhaps the best of Our Spain Trip.